MLB Betting with Statistics
Have you stopped by Cappers Picks today to use our MLB Betting Tips from the experts at Cappers Picks? Specifically tools for how to handicap with baseball statistics? Continue reading on for some insight on what stats to look at in your handicapping process and how to interpret them.
The amount of data available at the Major League Baseball level can be daunting. While every number can be valuable if you know how to interpret it, each has the possibility to lead you astray, too. Below I highlight a few different stats to consider and how to use each to exploit potential mismatches.
Batter vs. Pitcher Career Numbers
Starting pitchers stick around a particular game less these days than ever before. That means a handicapper can’t pin everything on how that starter has fared against the hitters in the lineup he will face on a given night but can’t discount it either.
I always like to take a peak at the batters’ career numbers against the starting pitcher and even some of the primary relievers.
Baseball is a game of one-on-one battles and each pitcher is unique in how he throws, what he throws, and all else. If a batter hasn’t figured him out after a while, he probably never will.
That said, sample size is important to note when looking at career numbers, as it is in most every scenario. If the batters in a lineup have not seen the expected starting pitcher much, I give the advantage to the pitcher in that situation.
The batters don’t know what to expect from the pitcher and it’s always toughest facing a guy the first time.
A large sample size, even if the results aren’t the best for the batter, still skews toward advantage offense. Deception and tricks are the pitcher’s friend and the more experience a batter has against a particular pitcher, the less of it the pitcher has.
This one is fairly obvious but it’s worth stating. I primarily use left/right and day/night splits, though home/away can also be useful.
A batter’s or a pitcher’s success against lefties and righties is very much real and when there is a stark contrast in the splits, it not only gives you a hint into how the matchup may go, it could hint into the manager’s lineup against a certain pitcher before it is announced.
The other two splits, day/night and home/away, are more useful for starting pitchers, I find. Whether it’s the heat or late-game shadows vs a cooler night-time atmosphere, some pitchers do much better either in the day time or at night. And if there isn’t a stark contrast, you can look at everything else.
The home/away splits often times have something to do with a pitcher’s style, whether or not he throws a lot of ground balls or how he pitchers lefties or righties. Of course, a ballpark’s dimensions are what really impact things here. If a pitcher who plays in a park with a spacious outfield does well to get lots of flies, he won’t have as much luck in a smaller stadium.
Ground Ball to Fly Ball Ratio
That leads me into the third statistic that I’m going to urge you to consider in every game you even start to handicap, which is ground ball to fly ball ratio.
Every pitcher has data available on how often he gets the batter to hit the ball on the ground vs in the air, as well as strikeout rate, which should be used in conjunction with the ground/air data. The same goes for batters.
This data is invaluable because so many other factors impact how much success a batter or pitcher will have based on whether you expect many fly balls, ground balls, or a balanced diet of the two.
Things such as the ballpark, the time of day and the weather will all contribute. Of course, a fly ball pitcher going against a team that likes to lift the ball in a small ballpark is a red flag. So is a ground ball pitcher playing on a fast surface like in Tampa Bay. A team that hits a lot of fly balls is likely to heat up as the weather warms and it gets more humid.
The takeaway I’d like you to get from reading this isn’t just what stats to keep a closer eye on but to realize that a number without context is useless.
You have to consider what you are consuming in terms of the context of the game. All these numbers and circumstances work together to give you a better idea of how a given matchup will play out.
Keep numbers close when handicapping but don’t trust them blindly. You the human have to know how much to weigh each and that formula is different for every single game.
What do you think of our article MLB Betting Tips: Best Statistics to Consider? Comments are welcome below.
CHECK OUT MORE SPORTS BETTING TIPS HERE.
Check out our Updated MLB Betting Odds.
CappersPicks.com has MLB Odds up on a ton of MLB World Series futures, and you will also find DAILY MLB Baseball lines up as well.
Register here for a FREE MLB Betting Account Now for Daily Free Picks & More Special Offers!